Prime Minister Scott Morrison believes there is a need to unlock more gas in order to lower domestic prices in Australia.
Speaking at the National Press Club in the lead up to the 2021 budget, Morrison said the government had committed to resetting its east coast gas markets, unlocking gas supplies, establishing a new gas hub and improving the gas grid distribution systems as part of its gas-fired recovery plan.
To achieve more affordable and reliable energy, Morrison said there were three things the government was doing in the gas sector.
“The first one is we need to unlock more of the gas. So I welcome the decision in New South Wales on Narrabri. I think it is great. We are talking about massive investment here, thousands of jobs, both in construction and ongoing,” Morrison said.
The second is ensuring the distribution networks through the grid are not serving the interests of gas companies, but customers.
Morrison said this is why he is taking a similar approach to a gas grid and gas hub because a distribution and hub system provided greater certainty about the supply and the forward pricing of gas.
“This means people can make judgements about where they are investing in their future lines and what the price of gas might be,” Morrison said.
Morrison’s final point was the National Cabinet’s work towards market reforms, with the energy subcommittee to ensure exporters of gas don’t send offshore what is needed in Australia.
The Prime Minister added that gas was both a feed stock to support industry and manufacturing sectors, and also a source of power that supports households.
“Gas is the transition fuel. It is what enables us to move from the energy economy we have now to an energy economy that’s going to be there in the future,” he said.